Puppy training can sometimes be a frustrating experience but it is always rewarding (so long as you do it right) and helps to build a stronger bond between you and your dog. And knowing how to train a puppy properly definitely makes things easier for you both.
Some puppy breeds are more intelligent and more eager to please than other breeds and this helps too. That said, even within breeds some dogs will be harder to train than others.
Whatever the breed of your puppy, the earlier you start the training process the better. And even if you’ve been unlucky and chosen a puppy who’s tough to train, don’t get discouraged.
Remaining calm and taking the time to teach your puppy to understand what you want and to respond to your commands is well worth the effort and will make life better for both of you.
Here are some techniques and tips on how to train a puppy in the best and most effective manner.
How to train a puppy
It’s important to make time regularly to train your puppy. Consistency and repetition is key to a puppy learning quickly.
Structure and routine is also important in other aspects of puppy care too, such as feeding times, playtimes, and bedtime. Your puppy will much prefer a well-regimented routine and respond much better to it, as they will know what’s required of them.
So take them out to toilet at the same time each day and to the same spot, take their food away if they don’t eat it at the time you put it out, and so on.
It’s vital that all members of your family are on-board with this and you maintain consistency between you all in the way you treat and train your puppy.
Making sure your puppy gets plenty of exercise and attention is also key. The amount needed is again breed dependent, but you need to ensure your puppy doesn’t get bored or have too much pent-up energy. If they do, they’re much more likely to exhibit unwanted behaviors such as chewing or barking.
Positive reinforcement training is always the best way to train a puppy. Shouting at them, or even worse striking them, will only serve to make them afraid of you and will not tell them what you actually want from them.
Rewarding your puppy with petting, hugs and treats when they exhibit the behavior you want tells them exactly when they’ve done right and will lead them to repeat that behavior. After all, every puppy wants to please their owner!
If all else fails, you can always take your puppy to training classes. This is often a good idea anyway as it helps to socialize your dog. You can also enlist the services of a veterinary behaviorist if your puppy is showing particularly problematic behavior.